All Tied Up

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In a world that is more wireless every day why do I find myself constantly wrestling cords, cables and wires?

My husband is especially gifted when it comes to bundling cords into neat little packages.

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My attempts look like more like I cooked spaghetti than tried to organize anything.

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I’ve tried several things over the years from twisty ties to rubber bands. Neither of which worked very well for me. But fear not I have found a few solutions to wrangling cords that if I can do them so can you!

One of my favorites is the empty toilet paper roll. You didn’t misread that. I especially love this trick because the roll encases the entire cord and keeps other things from getting tangled in it. It works for most interior household cords 10 feet and under. You can also use empty paper towel rolls – just cut it in half!

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If you have women in your home or you have long hair – hair accessories come in very handy! Hair clips work great!

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Hair elastics work great and I like them better than rubber bands because most hair elastics are made not to catch and pull hair and they also glide over the cords to make using them easier.

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For smaller cords a medium to large binder clip work well as long as you don’t crimp the wire/cord.

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And finally when traveling I rely on the trusty Ziploc bag!

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Ah yes the genius of plastic, plastic and more plastic. I love all of these solutions and now I don’t have anymore mystery boxes and piles of spaghetti lurking in drawers and closets!

House of Cards

Every January as I try to settle back into a routine post holidays, I notice that one Christmas decoration that eluded me during the cleanup. This year’s lucky winner was the card holder and all the cards we received during the season.

I love getting Christmas cards. In an ever digital world its nice to have a tangible reminder that someone took the time to pick out the card, sign it, stamp it, address it and get in the mail. Extra kudos go out to those of you who do the photo cards and yes I even enjoy the letters describing what you did over the past year.

But what to do with those cards after the tidings have been read and the pictures admired. It seems such a waste to toss them in the garbage.

I love to scrapbook (in my spare time) so I always keep the photo cards and put them in our albums. I even keep the letters in the album too as I am not the best at journaling what is going on in my own life let alone anyone elses. And there are those cards that strike my fancy as a graphic designer that are just too cool to be recycled. Like the card we received one year that was also an ornament of an angel. That was awesome – still hang it on the tree every year. But what about all those other cards.

The least we all can do is put them in the recycle bin, but if that seems to harsh here are a few other ideas.

1. Make gift tags out of them. My mother always prided herself on never buying gift tags. She would take the cards from the year before and cut them up into tags.

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2. Now if you really want to be cheap – cut the front panel off the card and turn them into postcards for next year’s cards. Not my favorite idea but it has its merits.

3. There are any number of crafts you can use Christmas cards for. Martha Stewart has some of the best. You can see them here http://www.marthastewart.com/276934/recycled-christmas-card-crafts#273222

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4. There are several organization who will take your cards and recycle them into new cards to raise money for their various causes.

As a craft junkie I can tell you there have been boxes of “stuff” tucked away full of pieces for projects that sounded cool; projects that I thought, “I’ll get to it someday.” Don’t follow in my footsteps, unless you actually plan to do a project save yourself the trouble of having to clear out the clutter later and put it in the recycling bin now!

If you’re a doer and these projects will actually get done, then I applaud you! Have fun creating some unique trimmings for your next holiday season!